The Survivors: Profiles of Courage and Responsibilitygreenspun.com : LUSENET : Heroes of September: Profiles of Courage and Responsibility Following the Attack on America : One Thread
Survivors: Profiles of Courage and Responsibility
-- MB (email@example.com), September 14, 2001
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-- MB (firstname.lastname@example.org), September 14, 2001.
Perhaps the most memorable, for me, bit of the news I saw in the past couple of days is the interview with the CEO for Cantor Fitzgerald, a bond trading company. I don't know his name. I think it's Doug.
He spoke to Connie Chung. His company had 1000 employees between the 98th and 103rd floors of the WTC tower struck by the 2nd plane.
About 300 of his employees are accounted for.
He was late getting to work because it was his 5yo son's first day of kindy, and both he and his wife were dropping him off. He was in the street close to the buildings when the 1st tower came down. He reported that he ran and had to take shelter under a car. The smoke and dust was so thick that he couldn't see his hand, even when he touched it to his face.
When he was able to walk, he wandered north for about 4 hours, and then it dawned on him to phone his wife.
In the following days, he has been compiling a list. 700 of his people are missing. His brother among them. He told Chung that he couldn't look for his brother, because he had such a long list. He had to go to hospitals and say, "Find me someone *anyone* on this list! Give me ONE phone call to make with good news!"
His 300 employees gathered on Wednesday and avowed to open the markets on Thursday, not to make money, but to keep the company alive. Doug said that he told them to go home and kiss their families, and they politely refused. They have offices now in the Pierre Hotel, and opened the market on Thursday as planned. He is very proud of them, and praises them for keeping the business open because now he/they have 700 families to take care of.
He broke down and said, "I have *700* families!" the respect and stewardship he so candidly expressed completely exemplifies for me the spirit of American enterprise to me. It's NOT about the bottom line, it's NOT just about career moves. It's about family and about the extended family of co-workers.
In that short interview, I learned what it means to be a CEO.
Cantor Fitzgerald and all those other companies are in my prayers.
-- Jay (email@example.com), September 15, 2001.